Last week was my friend Jenna’s birthday. (Happy Birthday Jenna!)…
It’s no surprise that as someone who posts about my life online, I often get asked questions in person about the content I publish. I receive a ton of questions about real estate, and general comments about my thrift store fashion finds. But the most common question I’m asked is far more than the prior two combined.
“So, how’s the house coming along?”
… And then the immediate follow up question: “So, when do you think you will be done?” The answers vary depending on when you ask and what stage we’re working on. Since I haven’t posted a house update recently, I thought I’d bring you up to speed as to where we are in our house project.
As you know, in February, we had the last of the insulation put in, and finally put up the walls downstairs. What a huge difference that makes!! Early March, we decided to lower the inside of the fireplace to make it flush with the flooring. Brandon and his buddy Johnny spent an evening digging out the stone hearth, which was filled with concrete.
By now, you know the story goes. (Remember last year?) The windows were not flashed properly, and had been leaking for years and years. Over time, water had gotten in and rotted the wall behind the fireplace. Looking back we should have dug the floor out then and there. But we didn’t. Instead, a year later, we found the last of the rotted wood. The moisture had traveled down behind the fireplace, leaving no place for it to escape. As a result, the floor joists were rotting against the sill plate along the wall.
^ The fireplace hearth before
^ The concrete between the floor joists
Brandon spent several nights and weekends working on repairing and replacing the joists below the fireplace. He put support columns in the basement below the beam. He cut away the old rotted joists- which in some areas weren’t even on the sill plate anymore. Once the joists were repaired, Brandon filled in the old ash pit with gravel and concrete to seal it from pests and future moisture. For good measure, he ran conduit lines in case we wanted to run gas or electric lines in the future.
^ All the concrete dug out, and the old ash pit from the wood burning stove
^ Wood forms to hold the new concrete in place
^ The hardened concrete with conduit leading to the basement
It’s a Dirty Job.
Brandon and his amazing coworkers took on the dirtiest of all jobs. They dug out hundreds of buckets of dirt from the basement so we could gain access to the floor joists. Code requires a crawl space under joists so you can access them for repair. Plus, our radiant flooring heat is run in between the joists, so it’s very important for us to access them if we need to. They hauled over 200 5-gallon buckets of dirt from our basement- roughly 300 cubic feet of dirt!
By the end of March early April, we began putting in the tubing for the radiant flooring in the porch. Currently, in Brandon’s spare time he is installing the dissipation plates in between the floor joists below the family room. My mom came over one weekend to help us out, which I posted about on my Instagram. Brandon ran the water lines, hooked them up to the main manifold and secured the sub-floor to the porch joists.
Right now, Brandon and I working on smaller projects around the house. We’d love to have our Kitchen cabinets ordered by the fall, but we’ll see!
I also want to take a moment to publicly say how AMAZING Brandon has been with regards to our house. Nights and weekend are prime time for real estate, and there are many occasions when Brandon is home alone working on the house while I’m at an Open House or showing properties. I’m so proud of the work he has done over the last few months! Also, didn’t he do such a great job on the photos for this post? He took most of them on his phone!
More house updates to come!
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